What is a Virtual Number and Does Your Business Need One?
With all the details entrepreneurs need to think about when running a small business, setting up a landline is likely not at the top of the list. In fact, most business owners these days default to using their personal mobile number for business.
But once your business grows, how do you deal with business calls? And what if your company is remote—do you ask your employees to use their personal numbers? Teams calls only? Or maybe you purchase a bunch of cell phone contracts and try to juggle multiple numbers.
One of the best ways to benefit from the flexibility of a wireless phone system while still having a professional business number is by using a virtual phone line. What is a virtual number? Glad you asked. We'll get into that next.
What is a virtual number and does your business need one?
A virtual number is not tied to a specific phone line, allowing the user to route calls to any device, number or IP address using the Internet. You may also hear this called an online number or direct inward dialing.
Virtual numbers are a huge advancement from the original telephone concept invented by Alexander Graham Bell in 1876. The first telephone was wired. Using a transmitter, it converted voice vibrations into electric currents, which were sent along the wire to a receiver.
Mobile phones removed the wires and allowed us to take calls from anywhere, and yet these networks still depend on being in proximity of a cell tower.
As long as you have an Internet connection, virtual numbers remove all physical limitations because they're cloud-based and use Voice-over-Internet-Protocol (VoIP) technology. The numbers themselves follow the familiar North American phone number format of a three-digit area code followed by a seven-digit number. This means even though your number is no longer tied to a physical location, you can still have a familiar number for where you're based.
Virtual numbers are a great solution for small business owners and entrepreneurs because you can use your virtual number from anywhere in the world and still be locally accessible.
How does a virtual phone number work?
Think of a virtual phone number as a replacement for your traditional landline, but more flexible. It's set up much like a traditional phone number, through a business phone system provider, and general options include local, international and toll-free numbers.
In addition to making calls, there are also add-on features such as call forwarding, call transfer, call recording, call tracking, interactive voice response, custom greetings, voicemail, text messaging and more.
Virtual phone numbers provide complete location flexibility while also allowing small business owners to separate their personal calls from work calls and avoid the complexity of having more than one phone.
How to take your virtual phone to the next level
Davinci offers virtual office live receptionist features, adding a professional and personal touch without requiring more staff. Business plans include a free local or toll-free number, live call answering, call forwarding and screening, voicemail management, advanced call routing and conferencing, unlimited long-distance calling, auto receptionist, online faxing and stellar customer service.